Possible Food Contamination Hits 2 New England States

August 8, 2008

In separate incidents, public health officials in two New England states are urging consumers to throw out prepared food bought from several stores due to possible contamination.

Rhode Island public health officials are warning consumers to discard all food prepared at an East Greenwich gourmet shop because it may be contaminated with the norovirus — a common stomach illness that causes nausea, vomiting and diarrhea.

The state health department says all prepared food bought at Greenwich Bay Gourmet between last Friday and Tuesday should be thrown out. Officials became aware of the problem after nearly half the guests at a weekend function became ill.

The store cooperated fully with the investigation and has taken appropriate actions.

Meanwhile, Massachusetts health officials are urging consumers to discard prepared sandwiches bought at two eastern Massachusetts grocery chains because they may be contaminated.

The “roller sandwiches” sold at eighteen Roche Brothers and Sudbury Farms stores may be contaminated with the bacteria Listeria monocytogenes. The bacteria causes listeriosis, which can be fatal to those with weakened immune systems, the elderly and newborns. It can also cause miscarriages.

The sandwiches were made by World Class Canapes Inc. of Wilmington.Consumers may have purchased the products between July 31 and Aug. 2.

There have been no reports of illnesses related to the sandwiches.

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